Strategies of Attrition (IV)


BERLIN/URUMQI/MUNICH/BEIJING (Own report) - German foreign policy makers, are upping their political pressure on Beijing, and holding talks with a Chinese separatist. As the Munich based "World Uyghur Congress (WUC)" announced, its president, Rebiya Kadeer will also be received by the foreign ministry. The Uyghurs, a Muslim minority from the autonomous region Xinjiang (Western China), are seeking the secession of their region "East Turkestan" from the People's Republic of China. Rebiya Kadeer's appearance in the German capital has been carefully stage managed for high profile in conjunction with US activities. Following the Dalai Lama's German Chancellery visit, Berlin has been escalating its anti-Beijing secessionist offensive. For decades, Germany - including foreign intelligence circles - has been cultivating relations to Uyghur exile politicians.


Rebiya Kadeer is visiting Berlin shortly after the Dalai Lama ended his European tour that provoked strong protest from Beijing. In September, the head of the self proclaimed Tibetan exile government visited the Spanish province Catalonia that, after having gained extensive autonomy rights, is seeking secession.[1] He continued his trip to Portugal and Austria, meeting with the head of the Viennese government. In Berlin, the would-be god king was received for the first time by the German Chancellery. Shortly thereafter, the US government created another precedent: in a public ceremony, President Bush presented the Dalai Lama the Congressional Medal of Honor, the highest civilian award bestowed by American lawmakers. Now it is Rebiya Kadeer, who is making a tour. Coming from the USA, where she lives in exile, her first stop-over was London, where she had talks with MPs, representatives of the foreign ministry and members of the government. She then proceeded to Berlin, where she is at present.

Policy Advisor

Current transatlantic activities promoting anti-Chinese separatism and weakening Beijing, are based on decades of German-US cooperation. Erkin Alptekin, a Uyghur living in exile, is one of the protagonists. His father, Yusuf Alptekin had already participated in the 1930s secessionist movement in Western China. From 1933 - 1934 he was General Secretary of the provisional government of the "Turkish Islamic Republic East Turkestan". The Uyghurs are still calling the region they inhabit in the People's Republic of China, "East Turkestan", because they consider themselves to be of ethnic Turkish descent. Some of them are striving for a pan-Turkish federation combining regions in Central Asia with Turkey. After finishing his studies in Istanbul, Erkin Alptekin, whose family is held in high esteem in Uyghur circles, moved to Munich in 1971, where he became "Senior Policy Advisor" to the director of the US station "Radio Liberty".[2]


It was at that time, that the CIA began to establish contacts to Uyghurs seeking secession. "Some, like Erkin Alptekin, who have worked for the CIA's Radio Liberty, are - in the meantime - on the forefront of the secessionist movement" writes analyst B. Raman, the former Indian government's cabinet secretary.[3] In Munich, Alptekin founded the "East Turkestan Union in Europe" in 1991 and in April 2004 the "World Uyghur Congress" and was named its founding president. From German territory, the congress is steering numerous Uyghur exile organizations around the world, of which some must be classified as being in the terrorist milieu, according to Chinese government information.[4]


The Munich based exile movement seeks to merge the Uyghur secessionist movement with the Tibetan and the Mongolian movements, to break up the Chinese nation from several of its peripheral regions. In 1985, former CIA advisor Alptekin participated in the foundation of the "Allied Committee of the Peoples of East Turkestan, Tibet and Inner Mongolia". He supported in 1998, an international conference in New York, organized by this Committee, where representatives of the US government were in attendance. The strategy of ethnic movements is shared by the Dalai Lama. In his message of greetings to the conference in New York, he wrote: "Geography, history and currently Chinese occupation is connecting our three peoples. I remain optimistic that the true aspirations of the peoples of East Turkestan, Inner Mongolia and Tibet will be fulfilled in a not too distant future."[5]

Public Relations

Rebiya Kadeer, currently in Berlin for political consultations, is continuing Alptekin's activities - and is also receiving German-US American support. At the end of the 1990s, Rebiya Kadeer, - at the time the wealthiest business woman in the People's Republic - ran into conflict with Beijing, because of her separatist activities, provoking her arrest. Through pressure from the US, she was able to leave China for the United States in March 2005, where she joined her husband. He is still working for Radio Free Asia, the Asian counterpart to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, also said to have close links to the CIA. Rebiya Kadeer has been systematically groomed as the unifying representative of the Uyghures. She has been nominated several times a candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize. A Bertelsmann Corporation publishing house recently published her biography - in German. The book has been receiving wide acclaim in the German media. In June 2007, shortly after her audience with US President Bush, it was presented at the Federal Press Conference in Berlin with interested Green parliamentarians in attendance.


Rebiya Kadeer visited Berlin for the first time in November 2006, during her trip to Germany to be elected president of the "World Uyghur Congress" in Munich. Her current Berlin visit follows on the heels of a resolution passed by the US Congress, calling for Beijing to grant Uyghurs new rights of autonomy and to liberate incarcerated separatists, including two of Rebiya Kadeer's sons. She will be received not only by the German Foreign Ministry, but will also have consultations with the Federal Parliament's Human Rights Commission as well as with representatives of party affiliated Foundations. This clearly shows that Berlin is escalating its Uyghur policy.

Petra Kelly Prize

This is being aided by the "Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO)" founded at the beginning of 1991 and based in The Hague. The Dalai Lama and the Uyghur secessionist Alptekin are among the co-founders. 69 "nations" are currently members of this organization, including "East Turkestan", Tibet and Inner Mongolia. The organization is demanding the "right of self-determination" for these regions of sovereign nations. In the meantime, six former UNPO members, among them Estonia, Latvia and Georgia have obtained the statehood, they had been demanding. The UNPO has a "coordination office" in Washington and has several "peoples" in reserve for use in the political strategies of Western powers. Among the UNPO members are Kurdish separatists from Iraq and Iran as well as secessionists form Serbia (Kosovo), who have long since been brought into position against their central governments, but also collectives in Russia and Myanmar seeking autonomy, who can be deployed whenever it becomes politically feasible.

The UNPO was honored with the "Petra Kelly Prize" by the German, Green Party affiliated, Heinrich Boell Foundation.

Please read also: Strategies of Attrition (I), Strategies of Attrition (II) and Strategies of Attrition (III).

[1] see also Language Struggle and Ethnic Europe
[2] Erkin Alptekin;
[3] B. Raman: US and Terrorism in Xinjiang; South Asia Analysis Group, Paper No. 499, 24.07.2002
[4] China Seeks Int'l Support In Counter-Terrorism; People's Daily Online 16.12.2003
[5] B. Raman: US and Terrorism in Xinjiang; South Asia Analysis Group, Paper No. 499, 24.07.2002